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years later the Titanic still arouses great interest. Recently, the liner was at the heart of tragic news with the implosion of a submarine that came to observe the wreckage of the boat. The curiosity and mystery around this liner are so important that an exhibition has just opened in Paris to retrace the history of the passengers and bring this exceptional place to life during a visit.
Faced with this interest, we also wondered what life was like on board the Titanic and more particularly the menus served according to the different classes ? Between caviar for the first class and meat broth for the third, the difference was substantial. And if you embark on a culinary journey in this article. Direction the night of April 14, 1912 aboard the Titanic.
It is Sunday, April 14, first class is busy, dinner time is approaching. For the meal two possible options. Some prefer to go to Deck B which offers a la carte restaurant. The place is more intimate and much less formal. To get there, just take the stairs at the back of the ship. The restaurant is nicknamed the Ritz because the majority of the employees who work there were trained in this establishment. The room is prestigious. The setting is inspired by the best restaurants in Paris, London or New York: it’s the crème de la crème.
It is chef Pierre Rousseau who is at the helm of this part of the boat. Tonight, once again, he put the small dishes in the big ones. On the menu: caviar, lobster, lapwing egg, which is a bird similar to a pigeon or Egyptian quail, we do not know where to turn. Impossible to ignore the selection of cheeses from France and England. And to end on a sweet note, we can let ourselves be tempted by fruits such as grapes or peaches, totally out of season in this month of April but deliciously good.
Change of atmosphere, for first-class people who would like to enjoy a slightly more stuffy and social atmosphere. Every evening, the boat offers a large dinner, on deck D, offering a unique tasting menu. A kind of banquet in a very large dining room. But beware, to enjoy this meal, the appetite must be at the rendezvous since in total no less than 11 dishes were planned by chef Charles Proctor.
The guests had the pleasure of tasting Russian oysters, that is to say in jelly with vodka, lemon and horseradish. There was also an Olga consommé which is a meat broth, poached salmon with mousseline sauce, Lyonnaise-style chicken sauté, roast beef sirloin and forest sauce, roast pigeon on a bed of watercress. Finally, it’s the foie gras and celery pâté that closes this farandole of savory dishes. Indeed, at the time, foie gras was served at the end of a meal. On the gourmet side, nothing beats delicious chocolate éclairs.
On the second class side, the menu was ultimately close to what the bourgeoisie ate at the time. Baked fish, lamb, roast turkey: once again the menu is tempting and rather generous. For dessert, there was pudding. It was also on the menu this famous April 14th. Passengers were able to enjoy a plum pudding a few hours before the disaster.
Finally, contrary to popular belief, the third class was also well off. If the price of the ticket was 25 times cheaper than that of first class, the quality of the food was there. Direction a large dining room, where conversations rumble in the room and where it is sometimes difficult to hear each other. On the menu: broth or minced meat, potato, vegetables and fresh fruit, jam and porridge for dessert.
It is at 11:40 p.m. that the Titanic will touch the iceberg. It sank in less than 3 hours around 2:20 a.m. and will remain one of the greatest maritime disasters ever known.